09 January 2017

Blogging for research

There are many reasons why anthropologists and other social scientists choose to blog. For instance, anthro everywhere! began as a way to share resources with instructors, students, and others who were interested in an anthropological perspective. Blogging is also an interesting tool to use during research and for sharing research results, as sociologist Mark Carrigan writes in a post from The Sociological Imagination: 7 ways to use a blog as a research journal.

Carrigan argues that writing a blog can be useful for:
  1. Recording particularly powerful extracts of texts to which I might wish to refer later
  2. Capturing ideas and insights which occur, usually when engaging with the ideas of others
  3. Brainstorming sessions in response to particular ideas or around particular themes
  4. Longer form reflections on particular topics
  5. Sharing ‘homeless’ bits of academic work that have been cut from papers
  6. Developing conference presentations
  7. Planning forthcoming writing projects
As the authors of anthro everywhere! can attest from writing their own research blogs while in the field, you might also use blogging to:
  • give potential participants a point of reference about your research
  • recruit participants to your study
  • keep in the habit of writing and work through some of the themes that you see emerging from your research as it unfolds
  • disseminate your research in an open-access format (as was the case for a project Jennifer worked on during her post-doc: Cultural Diversity and the Workplace)
  • build your digital identity as a researcher (see also: Advice for Grad Students)